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Being a practitioner of brutal honesty is always difficult.

Take yesterday’s tale of the parsnip cranberry cake; I was worried because even though I’d dug up two pounds of parsnips, there wasn’t one cranberry to be found. Not fresh nor frozen. So I grabbed a bag of frozen acai berries – that was the first mistake because there were no berries, it was just juice for a smoothie.

I swirled the juice over the top of the cake batter and popped them in the oven hoping the acai would add the needed tart moisture. As I was assembling the three layers with yummy cream cheese icing, but without cranberries or cranberry sauce, Bob said, “It’s lopsided!”

Now granted, he was right. It was like the Tower of Pisa! So I pushed and I turned and for just one moment I thought I’d fixed it. But no, I’d baked a crooked cake. There was no denying it, the truth didn’t exactly set me free but it did leave me with hope. Maybe it would taste good?

My friend and neighbor who is known to deliver peaches dropped off an extra copy of Sunday’s New York Times Magazine. The cover story is timely, “Free Speech Will Save Our Democracy; the First Amendment in the age of disinformation,” by Emily Bazelon.

It’s an article of faith in the United States that more speech is better and that the government should regulate it as little as possible. But increasingly, scholars of constitutional law, as well as social scientists, are beginning to question the way we have come to think about the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech. They think our formulations are simplistic — and especially inadequate for our era. Censorship of external critics by the government remains a serious threat under authoritarian regimes. But in the United States and other democracies, there is a different kind of threat, which may be doing more damage to the discourse about politics, news and science. It encompasses the mass distortion of truth and overwhelming waves of speech from extremists that smear and distract.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/13/magazine/free-speech.html

Finally social media has started to add caveats to false and misleading claims but much of the damage has already been done. Just this morning Mr T said he hasn’t had a call with a reporter for the NYTimes in two years – when in fact just two months ago he spoke with Peter Baker for 40 minutes! Does he have dementia or is this a malicious strategy to create a fog of lies so that we the people never know what to believe?

Sure in China information is censored, but will our democracy survive the chaos of chronic disinformation? We have 15 days to vote.

Last night, I delivered my listing/tilting parsnip acai cake to the Bride and Groom’s front porch. I admitted my failure and was told the icing was delicious! And as we talked about the L’il Pumpkin’s upcoming birthday, I told him that lying to your parents will get him in more trouble than telling the truth, every time! And he said, “Mom has truth-telling eyes.” And I believed him!

Parsing Parsnips

I was just opining about our lack of delectable take-out lately. It’s too salty, too puny, and just plain unappetizing. Why would such fancy, local restaurants develop a whole different menu for curbside pick-up with very little choice? And in between raindrops on our neighbor’s patio, with everyone in agreement about our plight, I forgot to tell them about my search for parsnips.

The other day I ventured out to The Turnip Truck specifically to buy parsnips. A few days before that, the produce manager at Whole Foods told me they haven’t had a shipment of parsnips in weeks. There I was standing in an empty grocery store known for its fresh vegetables, only to be told the same thing. Nada. NO. Not happening. Carrots yes, but. If a corporation like Amazon via Whole Foods and our small Turnip Truck grocery store can’t find parsnips…

…what chance do I have of ever baking Dorrie Greenspan’s glorious, three layer Parsnip Cake with cranberries? https://foodschmooze.org/recipe/dorie-greenspans-triple-layer-parsnip-and-cranberry-cake/

I should have known this would be difficult when I had trouble finding the key spice – coriander. It’s like toilet paper, the shelves were empty. But Bob was with me on the first day of the hunt, and he finally found a small 0.4 oz jar hiding out on a bottom shelf of Frontier Co-Op ground coriander. After all, he knew this was a competition.

Just because he is now baking sourdough bagels didn’t mean he could take over the cake and muffin arena in our kitchen!

I’ve baked zucchini and banana-chocolate-chip bread, bran muffins and mini-bundt cinnamon muffins and carrot cake during this pandemic. I’ve ordered new cake pans from Amazon and resisted ordering a huge KitchenAid mixer in turquoise because I take pride in using my 1960’s hand mixer in avocado green. However, the pasta making and sourdough bread baking shall remain unchartered territory for me. Boundaries people!

When the Bride first started cooking as a teen, she earned the crown of the Stir Fry Queen; and she still holds the title. I would never step on her shoes. But ever since I learned about using asparagus stems for soup, I feel like a Soup Queen. Venturing into new soup recipes with my trusty stick emulsifier, aka an immersion blender, the sky’s the limit. It’s like a huge KitchenAid blender becomes a tiny pepper mill in your hand!

Today, the plan is to make potato soup since Bob has dug up a bunch of purple sweet potatoes.

Parsnips would usually find their way into my soups, especially when the weather turns cold. What hardy vegetable soup doesn’t deserve a few good parsnips. I’ll continue my search for the dull, but mighty root vegetable at the Farmer’s Market, because I’ve made my triple layer carrot cake with toasted coconut icing for over 40 years and it’s time for a change.

And nothing says celebration like a cake!

Isn’t He Ironic?

If you can’t laugh at yourself, you’re doomed to a life of unending mediocrity. I learned this early, from my big brothers and Catholic School. On my Zoom call yesterday, I was recounting my instructions to Bob that he should shoot me if I’m ever really sick with Covid – like, will never recover sick. I immediately felt bad because that would mean he’d have to buy a gun, something we just would never do. We are so anti-gun it’s almost funny. But then Bob said:

“Don’t worry, I wouldn’t use a gun!” and the whole Zoom call burst out hysterically laughing.

Let’s face it, we could all use a good laugh right about now, and gallows humor seems appropriate. I’m lucky my pandemic partner can turn sourdough starter into bagels and still tickle my funny bone. But Mr T is sitting in the Oval, or maybe he’s at some Covid-super-spreader-rally somewhere, precisely because he has NO sense of humor. Because President Obama and Seth Meyer told a few jokes about him at that 2011 Correspondent’s Dinner, and he didn’t get it.

He can’t laugh at himself, and strangely enough his followers think that only they are IN on the joke of his presidency. Look at how strong T is, how he beat Covid, the Stock Market and all those conservative Judges! In this Sunday’s New York Times Magazine, I discovered that Mr T may actually have a twisted sense of humor, and it has a name, Ambiguous Irony!

Ambiguous irony also lets the president hedge his bets. Trump is constantly saying things he doesn’t mean (Jim Acosta is “a real beauty”), or things he kind of means but goes on to retract (his authority is “total”), or things he didn’t mean at first but later does (“build the wall”), or things nobody thought he meant that he apparently did (“lock her up”), as well as things he seemingly did mean before he retroactively declared them sarcasm — like his televised claim that injecting bleach might stop the coronavirus. Ambiguous irony opens up space for Trump to revise the meaning of his statements later, when he knows how they have played.https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/07/magazine/trump-liberal-comedy-tv.html

 He is the ultimate reality show star, constantly checking his ratings, his polls, his numbers; it’s more of a tactic than ironic. By this definition, Kellyanne Conway was right, in Trumpworld there are alternative facts! It’s pretty tough to make political punditry when the butt of your joke is a shape-shifter. Here is his attempt at self-effacing humor:

“What’s the difference between a wet raccoon and Donald J. Trump’s hair? A wet raccoon doesn’t have seven billion f—ing dollars in the bank.”

This morning, while members of the Senate Judiciary Committee take a few minutes to spew their ideology at the confirmation hearing for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, while she sits silently, masked in a tight fuchsia dress and pearls, I think that we, the American people are being hoodwinked. The hearing is a total sham because it takes 51 votes to confirm, and Republicans hold 53 seats.

Maybe Mitch thinks Democrats can’t count? I can’t look at Lindsay without throwing up a little in my mouth. This is why the world is laughing at us.

Left of Boom

Every morning I wake up and think, this is it. Today it WILL happen, if not today when? Then I get up and boom…

Pushed to the back of my ever-shortened To-Do list, my closet remains a mess. I thought I could start with the pants, all those pants that I never wear, that I can barely reach, that probably no longer fit, remain hanging silently, judging me.

Today Ms Bean woke me at 5am. I thought maybe we had an emergency, but no, she just missed me. So we let Bob sleep and turned on the news, because any day now our communal nightmare must end. Is VP Pence returning to DC because he’s sick? Or is Nancy going to appoint him President?

Poor Pence. While 28 states are seeing coronavirus spikes this week, all anyone could talk about was the fly to the left on his snowy white head. Of course it was actually on the right, or was it…? The passive aggressive mansplaining had gone on long enough, I gave up watching the debate. But Bob lingered; he saw that notorious fly stick its 10 point landing.

Memes aside, my takeaway was Momala Kamala’s quip, “I’m speaking,” said with a tinge of contempt mixed with pity. That ‘little boy lost look’ was no match for our Democratic challenger. The choice was clear. Yesterday’s grandpa who attracts flies and calls his wife “Mother,” vs today’s woman – a DA who can rock a pair of Converse sneakers?

We discussed all this with Great Grandma Ada and Great Grandpa Hudson yesterday sitting under a canopy in their parking lot. It sure beats the vestibule! This was our first real visit in seven months and the weather cooperated. She told me that when she laughs, it’s a heartier laugh – a belly laugh! She said she’s starting to practice T’ai Chi and going back to being a blonde since their beauty salon has reopened.

They heard a rumor at lunch about a kidnapping plot, and needed all the details. The white supremacist militia terrorist plot to kidnap the Michigan Gov was real breaking news, still unfolding. And all I could think about was the commentator explaining FBI lingo – they called the operation, the arrests and indictments “Left of Boom.” In other words:

“Boom” = the EVENT, the bombing and the kidnapping or possible execution of Gretchen Whitmer; and

“Left Of” is that exquisite moment before the Boom happens, when you’ve gathered enough evidence for an arrest. Two very brave informants wore wires and knew that all the training and planning was just about to come to fruition.

I hope these gun-toting, anti-government, anti-women, anti-semitic, racist extremists get locked up for life. Because we don’t need to fend off any attacks from other countries, we’re doing a fine job of self-implosion as it is. Don’t forget, disrupting the government was Steve Bannon’s idea.

The same guy who was arrested for defrauding donors of millions to build Mr T’s wall. https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/20/politics/bannon-build-the-wall-indictment/index.html

We’ll be Left of Boom for another 25 days metaphorically speaking. Make sure you have a plan to VOTE! https://www.showuptovote.com/

Risky Behavior

Driving around Walter Reed hospital just to wave to his supporters last night was an act of insanity.

Melania refused to visit Mr T because she too is positive for Covid-19, and she didn’t want to put her Secret Service at risk, but her husband could care less. If we are to believe that his oxygen levels dropped precipitously this weekend – and not knowing what to believe is a big part of the problem – and that he is now taking Dexamethasone a powerful steroid, then he should hand VP Pence the keys to the football/briefcase immediately.

But he won’t. You know he won’t.

Some of the side effects of steroids are well known; insomnia, mood swings, confusion, delirium or even paranoia. Take them long enough and they will erode your hip joints. Doctors do not treat their patients with steroids blithely. When I was finally diagnosed with West Nile, I was putting steroid drops in my eyes every 2 hours and taking oral pills too. I was also moving the Rocker into his freshman college dorm. It was all a very painful blur.

My point being that a president who just Tweeted 20 times in all caps in just one hour is losing it. Last night’s lap around the hospital is proof – can NO ONE say NO to this president?

Jumping through so many hoops to enact the 25th Amendment will not happen with the current Trumpian GOP, but isn’t there a doctor or two in Walter Reed who might get him involuntarily committed? He is definitely a danger to himself and others, and has been for a very long time. But even his doctors are crafting their words carefully, “We’re tracking that,” when asked if he has pneumonia.

Mr T knew that Hope Hicks tested positive, and still he mingled with over 200 donors in NJ. Reckless.

He pushed through his SCOTUS pick at a super spreader, largely unmasked Rose Garden event. Careless.

He ridiculed Joe Biden for wearing a mask, and ordered his family to take them off at his debate. Ruthless.

And now he’s demanding to go back to the White House. Maybe this is what the master manipulator wanted all along because the media is no longer talking about: Trump’s taxes; or Melania’s tapes that reveal she was too busy decorating for Christmas to care about separated families; or Don Jr’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, who paid $4 Million to an employee she was sexually harassing at Fox; https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/10/03/new-details-kimberly-guilfoyles-time-fox-news-are-horrific/

And what’s on the front page of the FOX disinformation website? “Trump is ready to get back to work!”

But are we ready?

What a Week

On a personal level, I celebrated my birthday this week by depositing our signed and sealed ballots, along with Great Grandma Ada and Hudson’s, into the historic Broadway USPS. We saw the Postmaster stamp them and Bob’s been tracking them online ever since. Now we can only hope our votes are counted!

And speaking of Hope, news broke that Hope Hicks tested positive last night for the coronavirus right before we went to bed. It gives me no sense of pleasure to hear that anyone of any political tilt has contracted this virus. I know what the Groom went through, and it wasn’t fun. I slept quite peacefully for a change last night, eight full hours, only to wake up and hear that Mr T and Melania have tested positive for Covid-19.

Or at least that’s what the president Tweeted.

There are so many questions, and the morning pundits are all abuzz – who else was exposed during debate prep for one. How could I forget that debate with Joe Biden? The way T threw shade on Hunter Biden’s past cocaine addiction. How T told the Proud Boys to stand by? I actually spent about 15 minutes watching it in disgust, and then went to bed with a good book, “Transcendent Kingdom,” by Yaa Gyasi.

My political life has turned a corner. It was either transcend this pandemic season of presidential denial or succumb. Maybe it was confessing my sins to a fountain, or maybe I just got a bit older. Hearing the news of Mr T’s taxes barely registered; I’ve become habituated to the daily onslaught of bad news. Sure, we’d all like to know who owns his marker for millions of dollars, what country?

But deep inside, I know that his cult will never betray him.

I truly wish Mr T well. We should not have lost 208,000 people to this disease – one in every 1,000 African Americans has died from it. How did we come to politicize wearing masks, why have Americans become immune to this tragedy? Writing in The Atlantic, Olga Khazan explains our collective exhaustion:

… there’s an additional explanation for this empathy deficit: Part of the reason this majority-white, majority-non-elderly country has been so blasé about COVID-19 deaths is that mostly Black people and old people are dying. Eight out of 10 American COVID-19 deaths have been among people older than 65; the rest of the dead are disproportionately Black. White people’s brains psychologically sort minorities as “out-groups” that stir less empathy. Segregated neighborhoods have also helped insulate white Americans from the horror Black Americans face, because the ambulance sirens and the packed hospital wards are typically far from their own zip codes. “

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2020/09/covid-death-toll-us-empathy-elderly/616379/

It’s our history of covert racism that set us up for this divisive Trump era. Still, just because the Groom’s ICU was filled with Spanish speaking workers from a Tyson packing plant, the virus didn’t discriminate. My Son-in-Law and his colleagues were lucky to have moderate cases. Yesterday, Bob and I got our “elderly” flu shot at Walgreens. One less thing to worry about.

The high point of my week was a stroll through the Nashville Zoo with the Bride and our Pumpkin and Bug! The summer days of sweltering heat are gone and my kind of sweater weather has returned, all the animals agreed. An adorable eight month old Joey kept scampering about the kangaroo enclosure and then would crawl in and out of his mama’s pouch., unsure about the world.

I know how you feel little guy.

Bless Me Father

“…for I have sinned.”

Every Catholic school girl or boy can recite that phrase in their sleep. It’s been drummed into them since they could first kneel in a confessional to get a priest up to date with the following, “My last confession was (fill in the number) days ago.” We had to eat tuna fish casseroles and think up sins every Friday, some of us more than others. Disobeying your parents was always a favorite.

The Flapper wasn’t really a Catholic, but she married one anyway. In her later years, she surrounded herself with representations of Buddha, and belonged to a group called Science of the Mind. But lucky me, after our Year of Living Dangerously, I was sent to a very Catholic family to cement the dogma with a side of Sacred Heart School. It didn’t really take.

Last night, Bob and I threw away our sins for Yom Kippur. In Judaism, you only get one chance a year to make yourself right with God. In our family anytime between Rosh Hashanah and today is a good time for confession. We walked to the park with Ms Bean, and symbolically threw dryer lint from our pockets into the fountain. It’s called “Tashlik” an act of atonement, from Micah:

 “He will take us back in love; He will cover up our iniquities. You will cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”

I’ve been thinking of how a woman, Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt, sang in Hebrew and spoke at the Capitol for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s service. She said that the Justice, even in her famous dissents, was not crying about her defeats, but outlining a future blueprint for the Court. There is no finer example of this than the Lilly Ledbetter decision about equal pay for equal work. Ginsburg’s reasoning in her 2007 Ledbetter vs Goodyear dissent is stellar:

Tellingly, as the record in this case bears out, Goodyear kept salaries confidential; employees had only limited access to information regarding their colleagues’ earnings. App. 56–57, 89. The problem of concealed pay discrimination is particularly acute where the disparity arises not because the female employee is flatly denied a raise but because male counterparts are given larger raises.https://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/05-1074.ZD.html

And RBG was there when President Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009!

And over this holy weekend for Jews, Mr T has said he will push forward a young judge to fill the empty seat on SCOTUS. If Amy Coney Barrett IS confirmed, she will be one of SIX Catholics on the High Court – one that has seen mostly White Protestant men over its history. But Barrett isn’t just any Catholic, she belongs to a fellowship called “People of Praise.” https://peopleofpraise.org/

She actually scares me because this is a fringe evangelical group – and anyone who is a zealot of any sort does not belong on the Supreme Court. Let alone filling such a profound woman’s seat in the midst of an election. Today is my birthday, and I just filled in my absentee ballot. My cousin has already voted in VA. I hope you have a plan for voting safely this year.

I wonder if Ms Barrett or Mr T have confessed any of their sins?

and it’s not just “The Florida Man.”

On our way back from wilderness camping (in a state park with an RV) to get away from it all, I made the mistake of checking in on Twitter. Gov Ron DeSantis has lifted all Covid restrictions, opening up bars and restaurants, allowing his state to enter Phase 3. He has also made sure that no local governments can do a run around – Florida is open for business!

Why am I not surprised? I mean the economy has to open up, funeral parlors have to make money. After 28 weeks in semi-quarantine, save our one trip to 30A in Florida, we were getting itchy to travel too.

Bob and I decided to try our luck with Nature this week. I’ve always said I’d rather call room service than sleep in a tent and cook over a fire. I mean I spent many summers sleeping in a cold cabin at Camp St Joseph’s for Girls. That was my idea of roughing it. Once we were married, I tried camping. Honest.

Great Grandma Ada and a whole other family of her friends invited us to the Catskills with them, there were about six or eight tents spread all over this forest. We gathered wood and built fires, it was primitive and smoky.

Without getting into the gory details, it just wasn’t for me.

But this week we packed up Ms Bean and tried glamping in a tricked out RV. I’d been having Covid-induced fantasies of chucking it all and hitting the road, nomad style. I’ve never been to the Grand Canyon and that’s #1 on my Bucket List! A friend told me to watch the movie, “Lost in America.” There was something about a “nest egg…”

Note to self – listen to your instincts. It was great not having to deal with people, or I should say not having to avoid people; listening to the rain, and the bugs, watching the herons and the deer. And thankfully Bob did all the hitching and schlepping. We didn’t think about the virus, we didn’t wear a mask for days.

More importantly, we didn’t talk about Trump, not once.

Then we find out Mr T may not want to actually leave the White House, even if he loses. That Republicans are planning to install their own electors in swing states. That he thinks it’s all rigged anyway. Isn’t he just a typical Florida Man?

Here’s a neat game to play – Google “Your birthday (month and day) then Florida man.” This is what I found, a guy was arrested after neglecting his grandmother! To be clear, an actual Floridian told me about this game.

Who was it that said, “Wherever you go, there you are?”

The hypocrisy and misogyny of the GOP continue to flourish.

In the middle of an election season, when many states have already started early voting, Mitch and Lindsay would like you to believe that they did NOT set a precedent when they withheld Merrick Garland’s nomination to the SCOTUS. Telling then President Obama that the people should decide the next justice; right then and there, the Senate lost all credibility.

And we Democrats, why did we go along? Because we thought Hillary would be elected? That’s why the Notorious RBG held on as long as she possibly could. She was waiting to step down and have the first female president fill her seat. And so, here we are.

Ready for a woman to be VP at least.

Meanwhile, the DOJ and Mr Barr have designated New York City, Portland and Seattle as “Anarchist Jurisdictions.” Which means the federal government can withhold funding, delay grants, and generally screw with the mayors’ budgets.

“Anarchism is a political philosophy and movement that rejects all involuntary, coercive forms of hierarchy. It calls for the abolition of the state which it holds to be undesirable, unnecessary and harmful.” Wikipedia

Reality check – WHO are the anarchists? I submit that people who like to undermine our institutions, and carry AR-15s into state houses and Starbucks are anarchists. People who think wearing masks in public treads on their precious individualism, that they are feeling coerced. Anarchists need to breathe, and infect anyone they please. They cannot help being vigilantes, shooting their guns and shouting out racist slurs.

But hey, let the government tell a woman what she can do with her body. AMIRITE?

Some of us can differentiate between peaceful protests and vandalism. Some of us know when the police shoot an unarmed Black man in the back it’s called murder.

“All I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks.” RBG

“…the DOJ cited New York City’s rising gun violence, cuts to the NYPD’s budget, and moves by various district attorneys not to prosecute charges related to protests earlier this summer.”

My sister Kay lives on the Upper East Side of NYC. She said yesterday the skies were blue and she had lunch at an outdoor cafe with her girlfriend for her birthday. It was glorious. Also everyone in her neighborhood wears masks! She was an airline stewardess when she had to be weighed and measured like cattle. Kay was one of the first, a beautiful Lipstick Feminist that Justice Ginsburg would be proud of; she had to hide the fact that she was divorced and had a child in order to work.

Paternalism at its finest is evident in this discriminatory threat by our Toddler-in-Chief to withhold money from the cities he thinks are behaving badly. And after our beloved RBG died on Rosh Hashanah, to insist that the GOP didn’t mean what they are on the record saying is ludicrous. Moms everywhere know this ploy. It’s called lying. As Anand Giridharadas said on Twitter this morning:

They want your back and feet to ache. Your dreams to die. Your business ideas to go nowhere. Your adult children to live with you forever. Your debt to haunt your dreams. Your body under their control. And they know they need to steal that seat to do it.” https://the.ink/p/they-want-to-steal-this-seat-for

Rest in Power Ruth. This is a photo I manipulated of my sister’s self portrait.

Turning the Page

Tonight a New Year begins for Jewish families around the world. It’s a time to reflect on our joys and sorrows, a personal reckoning of sorts that will culminate on Yom Kippur. But first, we celebrate the sweetness of life by dipping apples into honey.

I’m very happy to turn the page on this year. Bob and I had planned to explore Costa Rica. My brother and sister were finally going to come to Nashville for a visit this past summer. And next month, we were supposed to travel to Corsica with Marco and Claudio, our chefs du cuisine, international diplomacy and exuberant friendship. But there is always next year…

Happily, we managed a small, pod-isolated beach break with our Nashville crew. The Groom survived his bout with Covid, and the Bride still works in the ER, caring for any one who walks through the door. She is participating in the Moderna study for a vaccine – she had her second shot on her birthday! This summer, the L’il Pumpkin learned how to ride a bike! And our tiny neighborhood has grown closer, we look after one another, staying in close contact during tornado watches.

I almost forgot the tornado. Please God, make this tornado and wildfire business stop.

Tonight the shofar will call us to Temple but we cannot go. Instead a good friend is bringing Shabbos dinner to Great Grandma Ada and her cohorts. I’m baking my famous triple-layer toasted coconut frosted carrot cake. Bob has baked a round challah to symbolize goodness without end. Unlike his usual sourdough, this bread uses yeast and eggs and he must roll and braid it into one delicious mound of yumminess.

That’s another thing I’m thankful for this year – a husband who bakes bread. Taking the time to sew masks, bake bread, and generally sit around and actually talk has been enlightening. We have slow dinners on the Bride’s porch. We host “cocktails” in our garden. We seem to have learned the names of all the neighborhood dogs. Bowzer and Penelope are favorites.

The Black Lives Matter movement became a touchstone in 2020. Evident and inextricably linked to a legacy of systemic racism. And I’m hopeful that out of the pain and suffering, out of a public execution of a Black man in the streets of Minneapolis, and a young woman murdered in her bed in Kentucky, and so many more, that real change and peace will heal our history of racial violence.

All of our Fall birthdays have come to a close with Aunt Kiki yesterday. She is a shining light in the fog and fires, in these pandemic days with our son in California. I still think of her as that 19 year old Irish dancer who took the Rocker’s heart and breath away, only to return more love and laughter to our family. May they and their friends and everyone in the path of these wildfires out West stay safe.

L’Shana Tovah and may your next year taste sweeter and shine brighter. May your name be a blessing. And when we recover from this plague may we keep those lessons we’ve learned: about friendship; about stillness; about equal justice for all, about love.

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